Friday, 3 July 2015

Live Review: The Blue Screen of Death/Zaga Zaga/The Driers @ Koro [20th June 2015]

      Once again, a travelling band comes to Tel Aviv on their final leg of their Israeli tour. This time, it's The Blue Screen of Death from Germany.
   Support tonight came from local bands The Driers and Zaga Zaga. Both bands feature local legend Ben (Tversky) and both have been reviewed on this blog a number of times. Both bands are on top form as always and even play new songs in the set.

The Driers

   The Driers play a set full of their catchy and easy listening 90s style alternative rock, beginning with one of their newest songs, Squeeze, as mentioned in a previous review. The song has a great Weezer-style chorus and sounds like a future hit. Throughout the show, there are a few dedicated Drierees (will it catch on?) dancing around and singing along to songs they recognise from the last demo and other shows. Other new songs, Heartworms and The Slides, are along the rockier side of the band's style and I was incredibly impressed. They seem to have compiled a set of their "heavier" songs to fit in with the rest of the night's lineup. It paid off.


Zaga Zaga

   I've written about this band so many times that I'm going to make this as short as possible.

 Zaga Zaga  - shouting - guitar picking - frantic drumming - energy - new songs - same amazing set closer as always.

   Although I have managed to write about them before, I've come to the realisation that they are more of a band you need to experience than just read about.




The Blue Screen of Death

   Besides hearing some of their stuff on Bandcamp, I knew nothing about Germany 8-bit punk band The Blue Screen of Death prior to tonight's event. What I heard I enjoyed but in person it is a whole different ball game.
    I was surprised to only see three people take the stage; front woman Claude, bassist Manu and drummer Öm. I thought there was at least a keyboardist too or someone playing guitar with a lot of effects. Instead, the 8-bit sounds come from a laptop by the side of the drummer. As trios go, they still make an amazing racket.
   The style is frantic, shouty punk, or "nintendocore", as some people might still say. Every song is crazy and performed with perfect energy and enthusiasm. Claude is one of the most charismatic performers I have seen. Not only does she use the entire stage, she secures eye contact with the crowd (it's like she's singing just for you) and interacts with her band mates, proving herself to be a worthy leader. She's mesmerising. Manu and Öm are a very tight unit. They are not too serious and bogged down in what they are playing that the fun gets lost. Manu even comes off stage at one point to connect with the crowd. This is the kind of thing I like to see.

   As well as tracks from their record There Are Just 16 Steps Down To Hell and a few new songs (Megrim, Kokology and One Of Them), the band also covered To Hell With Good Intentions by Welsh based band Mclusky (ex-Future of the Left), once famous for their collaboration with the website on the video for their song Lightsabre Cocksucking Blues. The band played To Hell... with even more passion and conviction than Mclusky, along with the added computer noises, and came off sounding like it could have easily been an original. 
  8-bit/chiptune/nintendocore/whatever one wishes to call it has always been fun, with bands like Horse The Band and Anamanguchi helping to make it more popular. If you consider yourself a fan of this kind of thing, The Blue Screen of Death are not a band to ignore.


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